Hamburgers are my weakness, more so than any other food. And so, you can imagine, how happy I was to find out that they were opening The Counter in Marina Del Ray very close to my office. The Marina spot is the newest location in their attempt to dominate the world wide custom made burger market. That’s right, they have locations in Dundrum Ireland and Australia coming this year.
The Counter has a very simple, albeit sometimes complex, process. They give you a clipboard to order your burger. You then mark the order sheet up and had it off to the waiter. Deciding on beef, turkey, chicken or veggie burger, you then choose from a 1/3, 2/3 or one pound patty, your cheese, up to four toppings, 18 different sauces and the type of bun you want. They have a variety of premium toppings for an extra buck each if you’re so inclined.
The decor, pale blue walls to match their other locations, along with large roll away windows that open to the outside. Photos of old rockers and skateboarders are placed against the walls. Flavor Flav is proudly displayed over the bar area. Maybe because their food has lots of flavor? I don’t know, it’s a long shot. They also have a selection of beer and wine if you feel like washing your burger down with a nice lager or pinot.
Creating the perfect burger can be tricky at times and can lead to a less than average experience. You wouldn’t want to mix a pineapple slice and scallions with the southwest caesar dressing. At least I wouldn’t. You’re toppings should complement each other, tailored to your specific tastes. I almost always order mine with an English muffin and beef. Then mix it up from there. On this visit I added a slice of slightly tangy horseradish cheddar, pickles, lettuce, fried onion strings, avocado, and the Peppercorn Steak Sauce. The mix of the spicy cheddar, onions, avocado and peppery steak au jus was a Flavor Flav-orful combo. The fries are perfectly fried lightly powdered with seasoning salt and served with a tangy horseradish dipping sauce.
The burger was slightly overcooked for “medium”, but they just opened a couple of days ago so I won’t hold that against them. They actually sit you before taking your order at this location, and I have to say, I prefer it over the stand and wait with your number situation at the Santa Monica location.